Sebastian Vettel has suffered a massive blow hours before the start of the 2021 Bahrain Grand Prix. The four-time world champion has been given a grid penalty after the stewards found the German guilty of not slowing down enough during double waved yellow flags. Nikita Mazepin's spin brought the flags out in Sector 1 during Q1 of qualifying.
The German is an hour away from making his race debut with the rebranded Aston Martin Formula 1 team after moving from Ferrari last year. Sebastian Vettel was knocked out in Q1 in P18, for which he blamed the spin and subsequent yellows. However, stewards have now found that Vettel didn't respect the instructions drivers have been given for yellow flag situations.
This means that the four-time world champion has been handed a 5-place grid penalty and has been imposed a three-point penalty on his Super License. The German will not have to worry about a potential race ban because he started the season with no penalty points accrued on his Super License.
As a result of the penalty, Schumacher will now start in P20, behind Haas rookies Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin. The stewards added that many drivers were caught out by the Russian's spin in Q1, however, Vettel is the only one to be given a penalty since others slowed down or aborted their laps altogether.
When is the Formula 1 Bahrain Grand Prix?
The Bahrain Grand Prix race will take place on 28th March 2021, at 18:00 PM local (Bahrain) time. The race usually lasts for two hours, barring any yellow or red flags.
For fans in the UK, the race begins at 4 PM GMT.
For viewers in the United States, the race will begin at 11 AM Eastern Time.
For fans in India, the Bahrain Grand Prix starts at 8:30 PM IST.